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Old 6th May 2009, 19:21   #16
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Nice Travelogue with beautiful pics
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Old 6th May 2009, 22:22   #17
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Originally Posted by SkyWalker View Post
If you are planning to drive in the morning (lets say you hit Mysore around 8 AM) it might make sense to go via Mysore as traffic will be less. You cant miss the by-pass. Its prominently located just before you enter the Mysore city. While coming back if you are nearing the evening it might be pleasant to drive through the by-pass as traffic should be sparse there and you will enjoy the drive, even if its a a longer route.
Oh you mean the ring road? I will be reaching Mysore by 5 AM. So I guess while going to Ooty, I can go through Mysore and while returning, I can take the Ring Road. Is there a direction board for this Ring Road on the way back from Ooty?
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Old 6th May 2009, 22:47   #18
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i do this route quite regularly
if you're reaching mysore 5 am ish, you can easily pass through the city and hit the ooty road - you'll have to pass the karnataka state police training establishment. the Jaychamaraja Wadiyar Golf Club etc and then turn left onto the main road leading to Najangud.
Coming back also, my suggestion is to come through the city itself. It is hardly ever over crowded and it is far quicker to go through the city and get on the Bangalore highway than if you use the bye-pass/ ring road - thats a boring stretch of road.

going up to ooty and coming back down, my suggestion is to use the Sigur Ghat via Masinagudi - tight hairpin bends and steep narrow road but about 40 km / 1 hour shorter while going up/ coming down. ALso if you enjoy hill driving, you will love this road. Only, please use low gears only - both going up and coming down. Safer.

Coming back, you can take the "scenic" route passing Pykara, Prospect / Liddlesdale estates, Gudalur and then down. You will add about 40 odd km and an hour or so to your drive back though.
try and time your ooty departure in the morning say 11am max - this way you will be passing Mysore around 230pm. Should be in Bangalore about 6pm just as the light begins to fade. (two or three rest stops en route).

My personal request here is while you go through Bandipur Sanctuary, take time to enjoy the scenery and take photos - but please dont stop, dont smoke and dont litter - I am deeply pained each time I pass that way and see the way that people behave inside the Wildlife sanctuary.

Some small hill driving etiquette which one would do well to bear in mind - Uphill traffic always gets right of way.
Never overtake around corners/ hairpin bends. Honk once twice before you reach a hairpin bend/ blind curve. When you do overtake another vehicle on a slightly wider/ straighter stretch, (when he gives you a pass), honk quickly twice (means Thank You). Stick closely to the left side of the road - try not to drive in the middle and/ or keep to the right lane like people generally do in the cities.

Apologies for the lecture but I feel very strongly about "gentlemanly behaviour" and "road manners" especially in the hills and when Im around there I find that mostly its the "city/ plains" drivers that violate the code.

cheers and have a wonderful trip!

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Oh you mean the ring road? I will be reaching Mysore by 5 AM. So I guess while going to Ooty, I can go through Mysore and while returning, I can take the Ring Road. Is there a direction board for this Ring Road on the way back from Ooty?

Last edited by shankar.balan : 6th May 2009 at 22:54.
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Old 7th May 2009, 07:30   #19
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^^

Thanks a lot . Surely will keep your suggestions in mind. And I totally agree on not polluting the forest.

Skywalker, wheres the travelogue?
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Old 7th May 2009, 08:08   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ashwinsid View Post
Oh you mean the ring road? I will be reaching Mysore by 5 AM. So I guess while going to Ooty, I can go through Mysore and while returning, I can take the Ring Road. Is there a direction board for this Ring Road on the way back from Ooty?
Yes there is - after you clear the bad stretch of Hangala Village and head to Nanjangaud, you will see a prominent right turn marked Bangalore after a police checkpost. That's the one. But as Shankar mentions below, mebbe its better to avoid it. I like driving there as its deserted and you can do some great speeds there (there are speedbreakers, but much less)

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Coming back also, my suggestion is to come through the city itself. It is hardly ever over crowded and it is far quicker to go through the city and get on the Bangalore highway than if you use the bye-pass/ ring road - thats a boring stretch of road.
Shankar, do you know whats the approximate difference between going via this ring road and city in Kms?


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(when he gives you a pass), honk quickly twice (means Thank You).
interesting. this is the first time i am hearing about honking to thank. is this a prevalent practice in the highway or hillside?
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Old 7th May 2009, 08:35   #21
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about 18 odd kms distance as far as I remember.
Ref honking - it is common practice in Hill Driving to thank someone who gives you a pass - largely on account of narrow roads and a certain sense of courtesy, which is sadly missing in our cities/ highways.

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Shankar, do you know whats the approximate difference between going via this ring road and city in Kms?



interesting. this is the first time i am hearing about honking to thank. is this a prevalent practice in the highway or hillside?
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Old 7th May 2009, 09:46   #22
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Shankar, do you know whats the approximate difference between going via this ring road and city in Kms?
The traffic policeman at the ring road signal told me that the ring road is 24 km long and if you go through the city, it is around 8-10 km long, depending on how you pass through the city.
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Old 7th May 2009, 10:08   #23
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Ok..now there are two ways to take the ringroad and reach Ooty road without touching Mysore city.

You could take both the left and the right at the ring road Jn. and reach Ooty road, if you take the right its longer and joins back at Ooty road much further and is about 25 kms from the point you exit Bangalore road and join Ooty road.

If you take the left at the ringroad Jn. you would pass near Lalith Mahal palace hotel and join the Ooty road near the race course after passing through Karanji Park. The distance between the point you exit Bangalore road and the point where you join the Ooty road if you come via the other side of ring road if my memory serves correct is about 16 kms. You could also go through Mysore city without taking any deviation at the ring road Jn and save about 4 kms on this. But I have always felt it more comfortable in taking a left at the ring road Jn and reach Ooty road without any traffic worries.
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Old 7th May 2009, 13:39   #24
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Places

Day 1

Our choice place to hit was Doddabeta Peaks, since it was close to the hotel. This is a popular spot, claimed to be the highest point in Ooty. Very soon we realized why my buddies advised me against Ooty now. It’s a major swarm out there. We walked around for some time and made a quick exit. With buses everywhere there was a major traffic jam in the parking place and it took me about 20 minutes to get my car out.
Ooty! - You gotta be kidding, Right?-1.jpg 'The Swarm' @ Doddabeta peak

En route there are quite a lot of tea/chocolate shops. We made a pit stop at one and had hot lemon tea. Refreshing. Apparently the coffee turns out to be from vending machines. Can’t blame them since they claim "Finest Nilgiri Tea" only. Mental note to myself: gotta learn to read within the lines
Ooty! - You gotta be kidding, Right?-2.jpg Finest Nilgiri Tea

We travel back and are appalled at the traffic. Bangalore peak traffic seems like a walk in the park compared to this. Did we travel to Ooty to do this? Nay! Better senses prevail and cook up a plan B - hit Sinclairs and do some local exploration. It helps that Sincalirs is strategically placed and there's a place around (a Tea+Chocolate Factory) if you take a small trek. Sounds like a plan - here we go.
Ooty! - You gotta be kidding, Right?-3.jpg Brewing romance among tea leaves?

We purchase some souvenirs and get out. The factory again is located well, with a good view to the valley. It’s still not evening, though the view is lovely

Ooty! - You gotta be kidding, Right?-5.jpg I should have gone HDR to capture the magic; my poor little D40 can’t do a good dynamic range.
Ooty! - You gotta be kidding, Right?-4.jpg When you "factor" the factory...

Back in Sinclairs, we decide to spend a leisurely evening in the green meadows. The sky is dramatic and fresh air is intoxicating. The changing sky, blooming flowers and yonder valley make it look surreal. A satisfying way to end an eventful day.
Ooty! - You gotta be kidding, Right?-6.jpg
Where heaven meets the earth

Day two and three coming soon...

Last edited by SkyWalker : 7th May 2009 at 13:48.
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Old 7th May 2009, 14:26   #25
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Loved the teaser photo and the last one too. Nice travelogue, waiting for the rest.

Did you took the Gudalur route? Have the roadwork been completed? Or is it still bad? How are the roads in Ooty itself and the surroundings(Kunnur/Kotagiri etc.)
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Old 7th May 2009, 14:44   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shankar.balan View Post
about 18 odd kms distance as far as I remember.
Quote:
Originally Posted by pjbiju View Post
The traffic policeman at the ring road signal told me that the ring road is 24 km long and if you go through the city, it is around 8-10 km long, depending on how you pass through the city.
so i guess it about 16-18 km extra if you take the ring road. The road is good and has almost zero traffic. You can do some good speeds there. Even the occasional speed breakers are positioned only in key junctions. Personally, i liked this road, your mileage may vary.

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Originally Posted by pypkmsrikanth View Post
But I have always felt it more comfortable in taking a left at the ring road Jn and reach Ooty road without any traffic worries.
agree.

Quote:
Originally Posted by shankar.balan View Post
Ref honking - it is common practice in Hill Driving to thank someone who gives you a pass - largely on account of narrow roads and a certain sense of courtesy, which is sadly missing in our cities/ highways.
in city, we are way too courteous and honk for anything and everything just kidding. i know what you mean and thanks for letting me know.


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Originally Posted by kaushik_s View Post
Loved the teaser photo and the last one too. Nice travelogue, waiting for the rest.
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Originally Posted by ashwinsid View Post
Skywalker, wheres the travelogue?
thanks - more coming. I am squeezing in some time to complete this.

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Originally Posted by kaushik_s View Post
Did you took the Gudalur route? Have the roadwork been completed? Or is it still bad? How are the roads in Ooty itself and the surroundings(Kunnur/Kotagiri etc.)
The roads are good and can motor in peace, some widening is happening in the ghats and debris is lying around in places. There was a time when i had to drive in reverse over a sharp bend for almost 15 meters so i can let a bus (and 300 vehicles behind it ) pass.

Last edited by SkyWalker : 7th May 2009 at 14:45.
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Old 7th May 2009, 16:26   #27
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So you finally managed to get reservations and go on the trip ! Did you visit Shinkows ? Nice travelogue and pics by the way...
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Old 7th May 2009, 16:44   #28
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@kannan: yessir - phinally!

We didn't hit Shinkows though. We went to this place called Glen something for lunch on second day. I didn't like the idea of driving up the narrow roads to Sincalirs at night so both days i returned by to the hotel before 7 Pm and lazily ate the dinner buffet

Yercaud on the menu somewhere in Aug-Sep. hope the climate is better then. Wayanad-Munnar planned for Dec. Hope we bump into each other in some resort, sometime soon.

Last edited by SkyWalker : 7th May 2009 at 16:57.
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Old 7th May 2009, 16:47   #29
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Great snaps namesake
Ooty is nice as long as we stay away from the crowds.
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Old 7th May 2009, 16:53   #30
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@kannan: yessir - phinally!

We didn't hit Shwinows though. We went to this place called Glen something for lunch on second day. I didn't like the idea of driving up the narrow roads to Sincalirs at night so both days i returned by to the hotel before 7 Pm and lazily ate the dinner buffet

Yercaud on the menu somewhere in Aug-Sep. hope the climate is better then. Wayanad-Munnar planned for Dec. Hope we bump into each other in some resort, sometime soon.
I actually just got back from a three day trip to Kozhikode and Kannur, 1st to 3rd. Nice to know you had a good time at Ooty, climate there must have been wonderful after the heat of Bangalore.

Yes, bumping in to each other will be wonderful, hope that happens sooner than later though !
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